Eagle Rock Reservation

Eagle rock reservation2

Bike trails, walking trails, bridle trails . . . you name it, Eagle Rock Reservation has it! Situated on 408 acres and bordering West Orange, Verona, and Montclair, Eagle Rock Reservation boasts an extensive trail system.

The Olmsted brothers, who also designed Central Park in Manhattan, designed Eagle Rock Reservation in the late 1800′s. After the land was first purchased in 1895 and Frederick Law Olmsted created a preliminary design for Eagle Rock Reservation, the reservation was further developed in the early 1900′s by the Olmsted Firm. Eagle Rock Reservation got it’s name “when bald eagles were said to nest in the rocky cliffs on the eastern edge.”

What is now the Highlawn Pavilion restaurant was, at one time, an old casino built on the reservation in 1911. Back then, a “casino” referred to an Italian-style summer house. Lookout Point offers an amazing view of the New York skyline.

The popularity of Eagle Rock Reservation as a picnicking spot in the late 1800′s led to the trolley line being put in place at the foot of Eagle Rock Avenue.  Those who took the trolley to the foot of Eagle Rock had to climb the last 100 feet or so up a path constructed on the side of the cliff if they wanted to enjoy the spectacular views offered at the top.

In 2004, the Eagle Rock Conservancy was formed.  Their goal is to maintain, protect, and restore the Eagle Rock Reservation via maintenance to the trail, fundraising, and raising awareness.

If you are planning a move to our wonderful area, please contact us for a FREE copy of our town snapshots.  You can reach us at 973-637-0004 or via email at Shannon@ShannonAronson.com.  To search homes for sale, click here.  For great real estate information, please visit my website at www.NJRealEstateDirect.com.


Turtle Back Zoo Continues “Zoo-vies” Through August

Turtle Back Zoo Zoo-Vies

Turtle Back Zoo, located in West Orange, NJ, will continue their Family Nights on Wednesday nights through August. During Family Nights, the Turtle Back Zoo presents “Zoo-vies”, animal related movies shown on the top floor of the Turtle Back Zoo parking deck. The Turtle Back Zoo has extended hours until 8:30 pm during Family Nights with the last admission being at 8 pm.

Families attending Zoo-vies should bring chairs or blankets.  Admission to the movies is free (you do not have to purchase admission to the zoo), and the Zoo-vies begin at dusk. In the event of rain, the movies will be cancelled.

Scheduled Zoo-vies for August are:

Wednesday, 8/2: Ferngully: The Last Rain Forest
Wednesday, 8/9: How to Train Your Dragon
Wednesday, 8/17: Indiana Jones and The Temple of Doom
Wednesday, 8/23: Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them
Wednesday, 8/30: Moana

The Turtle Back Zoo is open daily from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Admission prices are as follows: Children and senior citizens $12; Adults are $15 and children under 2 years of age are free.

The Turtle Back Zoo is one of the gems located in the Millburn Short Hills area. If you are interested in making a move to Millburn Short Hills, West Orange, or any other surrounding communities, please contact me. I’d love to set up a showing for you at any of the fantastic homes for sale. For more information about our great communities, contact us for a FREE copy of our town snapshots. You can reach me by phone at 973-637-0004 or via email at Shannon@ShannonAronson.com. For great real estate information, including insider tips, please visit my website at www.NJRealEstateDirect.com.

Is Home Flipping For You?

home flipping

Have you ever considered flipping a house? From 2015 to 2016, home flips rose 3.1 percent. The average profits from flipping a house were $62,624, according to data from ATTOM Data Solutions. The states with the greatest number of flips were Florida and Tennessee. Below find some pros of cons of home flipping. Click here to see this article in its entirety.

Pro: Home flipping can earn you a large sum of money in a short period of time.
Con: If your flip flops, you can lose money. Unexpected expenses can come from home repairs you weren’t expecting or having to pay taxes. If the flip takes longer than anticipated, you may incur higher costs from paying the mortgage and other home-related expenses longer than you had planned to.

Pro: Home flipping can be a great learning experience, teaching you things from finance to construction.
Con: Flipping a home can be very stressful. Know there will be bumps along the way and risk involved.

If you would like more information, please be sure to contact me. You can reach me by phone at 973-637-0004 or via email at Shannon@ShannonAronson.com. To search homes for sale, click here. For more great real estate information, please be sure to visit my website at www.NJRealEstateDirect.com.

Millburn High School Class of 2017 Once Again Proves Millburn’s Pedigree


Millburn High School delivered an extremely impressive class of graduates in 2017. As this year’s graduates prepare to head off to college, we analyzed the trends in their college acceptances and choices. This year, as in past years, students excelled academically and their community is no doubt extremely proud of their performance and looks forward to their future accomplishments.

Millburn High School students are well represented across a wide range of higher education choices. From the Ivy Leagues, top Liberal Arts schools, international schools, the leading public schools, the nation’s best party schools, and everything in-between, Millburn High School sends students off to schools that nurture all kinds of interests and academic levels.

Let’s take a look at the numbers. The Ivy League schools are fortunate to be receiving 14 of Millburn’s best and brightest. That makes up about 4% of Millburn’s graduates. This fall, 57 of 356 students in the class of 2017 are off to one of U.S. News & World Report’s Top 25 universities. Furthermore, 124 students will be attending the Nation’s top 50 schools. Those statistics show that about 16% of Millburn High School students are going to top 25 schools and about 35% of the students will attend top 50 schools across the country. Millburn graduate Arik Wolk, who will be one of 12 students attending Washington University in St. Louis next year, explained why he believes so many Millburn Students are well positioned to attend some of the nation’s best colleges. He said,“Between the supportive student community, the teachers who are always willing to help, and the academic preparation the school provides, Millburn High School provided me and my peers with the opportunity to attend some of the nation’s top colleges!”

Some students are more interested in the intimate Liberal Arts setting as opposed to the bigger, national universities. In fact, 29 students have decided to pursue a Liberal Arts education and will be attending one of the nation’s top 50 Liberal Arts Schools as opposed to the top National Universities. Those 29 students make up about 8% of Millburn’s graduating class. In fact, Ethan Denenberg, who will be attending Colgate University in the fall, explained his reason for choosing to take up a Liberal Arts education. He noted, “In college I really want to be able to connect with my professors on a personal level. At large state schools, students tend to get lost in the shuffle and end up taking many large lecture classes. On the other hand, Colgate has a small average class size and students interact with their professors inside and outside of the classroom. Coming from Millburn where I had so many great relationships with my teachers, it was important for me to continue building these bonds in college.”

It’s also true that some students want to explore something new and have a completely new experience with their college careers. Some of Millburn’s most adventurous students will be attending schools outside the country; studying at schools like The University of Toronto, McGill University, and the University of Surrey. Cameron Varnish, who will be attending the University of Surrey in England next year, explained how Millburn High School helped him feel prepared to study anywhere in the world. Varnish told The Shannon Aronson Team, “Millburn High School is a school that helped me to develop academic independence. Because of this, I was open to just about any university — near or far from home. I felt I was well-prepared and ready. Therefore, when my Mom suggested I go to England to continue my education, as well as having the opportunity to play rugby for a team in England, I knew I would be able to handle it. I believe MHS prepared me well and helped me to find what works best for me in terms of studying, reviewing, and test-taking skills, and I’m excited to put them to use in a new environment.”

Additionally, some students prefer the bigger “rah rah” school kind of atmosphere that one can only get at a big public school. About 18% of Millburn students are going off to the Nation’s top 25 Public Universitiesas ranked by U.S. News & World Report. Contrary to popular opinion, even in a school like Millburn, it is not all work and no play. Next month 12 Millburn High School students will be attending the Top 5 Party Schools in the country as ranked by the Princeton Review.

Rutgers University-New Brunswick will be Millburn’s most represented college with a total of 18 Millburn students attending. One of those 18 Millburn students attending Rutgers next fall is Emily Blumstein. When Emily was asked about how she felt that so many other students were attending Rutgers next fall she said, “Although Rutgers is huge, it is nice to know that I will see some friendly faces around campus! Our interests are so diverse, so I’m sure MHS will be well represented in all departments and fields.” Moreover, some other popular destinations include New York University, Tulane University, and Washington University in St. Louis.

The Shannon Aronson Team hosted an extremely popular Facebook LIVE event featuring 5 recent Millburn graduates. Although school ranking and test scores are readily available on the internet, these students gave viewers an insider’s look at life inside the Millburn school system. This information isn’t available anywhere else.  For more information on this please watch “Growing UP Millburn: An Insider’s Perspective from Millburn High School Graduates” Facebook LIVE Event, on our business page, The Shannon Aronson Team Keller Williams Realty, and also available on YouTube.

To The Shannon Aronson Team, these numbers show that the Millburn School System doesn’t just cater to the needs of one specific type student, but to the needs of all. This proves yet again, why the Millburn School System is so highly regarded by all. Congratulations to the Class of 2017 for all of your impressive accomplishments.

Millburn Short Hills NJ Real Estate Trends

Millburn Township

Millburn Short Hills, NJ Real Estate Trends – Listing vs. Sold Prices

Curious about current Millburn Short Hills NJ real estate trends? If you are considering a move to Millburn Short Hills NJ, you may be wondering about the most recent Millburn Short Hills NJ Real Estate Trends. When we compare listing price and sold prices, it gives us a good indication of where the real estate market is heading. First, let’s understand the difference between a listing price and a sold price. The listing price is what the sellers are asking for their home, while the sold price is the amount a buyer is willing to pay. When we look at the chart below, we can see the median listing price was at its lowest in August of 2016 while it reached its peak over the course of the past 12 months in January of 2017. The median sold price increased steadily between August 2016 and December 2016 and then saw a drastic decline between December and January. Median sold prices have remained relatively low in comparison to that peak they experienced in December of last year. Thinking of selling? Click here to find out what your home is worth.

Millburn Short Hills NJ Real Estate Trends

Millburn Short Hills NJ Real Estate Trends – Market Inventory Trends

As we continue to examine the most recent Millburn Short Hills NJ Real Estate Trends, the chart below shows us how many active listings have been on the market in Millburn Short Hills NJ. The median number of days active properties have been listed is 71.

Milburn Short Hills NJ Market Inventory Trends

Millburn Short Hills NJ Real Estate Trends – Learn More!

As we wrap up our look into the Millburn Short Hills NJ Real Estate Trends, some other interesting statistics to note are: $2,089,530 is the median listing price, 71 is the median days on market, and the number of active listings is 122.

If you find you still have questions regarding Millburn Short Hills NJ real estate trends, or you would like to see any of the homes for sale, please be sure to contact me. I can be reached by phone at 973.214.0691 or via email at Shannon@ShannonAronson.com. For more information about Millburn Short Hills NJ and our surrounding communities, please be sure to visit my website at www.NJRealEstateDirect.com.

Growing up: Millburn NJ Insider’s Perspective from Millburn NJ High School Graduates

Last week Shannon sat down with several recent Millburn NJ HS graduates to get an insider’s look as to what it’s like to grow up in Millburn NJ. To see the interview in it’s entirety, click here. As a realtor in this town, I can tell you many of my clients move here because of the school system. The internet can show you rankings and test scores, but they cannot tell you what it’s like to grow up in one of the best school systems in the country.

The recent grads shared with us some of the many activities that were offered to them through the Millburn Township NJ school system. Those activities included several sports teams, theater groups, music clubs, clubs that allowed the students to learn and exercise leadership skills, and clubs that allowed them to raise money for non-profit organizations. Many of the students have been involved with volunteer groups. They mentioned that the Millburn NJ community encourages an atmosphere of giving back. One student shared that growing up in Millburn NJ, you feel some responsibility to help. They shared how there are many outlets that provide opportunities to volunteer. Many of those opportunities come through the Millburn NJ high school as well. It was shared that each club has a different focus on what charity they benefit.

Many of the students interviewed moved to the Millburn NJ area when they were very young. Shannon revisited the elementary school years with the graduates. Shannon asked them to describe what it was like attending Millburn Township schools in their younger years. Words the students used to describe those early years of learning included fun, welcoming, friendly, exciting, balance and instilling a love of learning. The students looked back on who their favorite elementary school teachers were.

Next the students shared some insight into what their middle school years were like. The students talked about the opportunity to meet new people in the middle school as the elementary schools merge together. Some students shared that the sense of responsibility instilled in them during their elementary school years helped with their transition into middle school. Shannon shared that there are 5 elementary schools in the Millburn Short Hills area. Those five elementary schools merge into one middle school. One student shared that Millburn Township schools is planning to open a 5th Grade building which he felt would ease that transition to middle school even more so. One student shared how she liked the concept of academic teams in the middle school. She felt that also helped the transition by allowing students to get comfortable with a larger pool of students within a smaller team framework. The group discussed the peer leader program offered at the middle school. To become a peer leader you are required to write an essay and complete an interview. Types of peer leader opportunities include tutoring other students and volunteering. Some other middle school clubs the students enjoyed were theater and community rec sports.

Next, the conversation moved to the students’ high school experience. The students were asked how they felt about their transition from middle school into the high school. One student shared that he felt the middle school did a great job helping them to progressively prepare for their transition to high school. They shared that the Senior Ambassador program has Senior students go into the Freshman homerooms to answer any questions they may have. They felt this program really helped to ease the transition as well. One student shared that as she transitioned into the high school, she was excited about the clubs and electives that were available. Shannon asked the graduates what they would say to incoming students who may feel threatened by the high level of academics for which Millburn Township NJ schools are recognized. One student said his advice would be not to compare yourself to anyone else. Another shared that there are different levels of classes offered. She said not to feel ashamed to ask to be switched to a lower level class if the classwork is too difficult for you. She said she found the teachers very willing to work with you if you approach them and ask them their opinion. One graduate shared that he liked studying in groups. That way, if you didn’t understand something, maybe someone else in the group would be able to help. He said other students always seemed willing to help and that the high school is a great community.

Niche.com ranks Millburn Township schools as having some of the best teachers. Shannon asked the recent graduates what their opinion was of the teachers. One shared that he felt the teachers really want the students to succeed, and that they want to prepare you for what lies ahead. Another shared that the teachers are very approachable.

Shannon asked the grads what they hear from friends who are a year or two older than them in regards to how they felt Millburn Township schools prepared them for college. One shared that a friend of his said that Millburn really prepared her well. He said he has heard that from several other graduates as well. The others all shared similar stories.

In conclusion, they shared some of their favorite places to go in Millburn NJ. Among them were the Coffee Mill and the Millburn Deli. They also recommend the Turtle Back Zoo as a great place to see if you are visiting Millburn NJ for the day.

If you are planning a move to Millburn NJ, contact Shannon for a copy of our FREE town snapshots to help you learn more about Millburn NJ and surrounding communities.  If you would like to see any of the homes for sale in Millburn NJ, contact Shannon!  She would love to set up a showing for you.  Click here to search properties for sale.  For great real estate information, please remember to visit my website at www.NJRealEstateDirect.com.


Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge

great swamp national wildlife refuge turtles

If nature is your thing, take a ride to the Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge in Basking Ridge NJ. Located at 32 Pleasant Plains Road, the Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge is home to fabulous waterfowl, mammals, reptiles and amphibians. Click here to visit their website. Kristin Krag, buying specialist on the Shannon Aronson team, comments that the Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge is  “A great and beautiful sanctuary, vital to the natural ecosystem that could have been an airport if the residents hadn’t fought it in the late 70′s.” Diane Bausch of the Shannon Aronson team says, “It’s a pretty drive to get there. There’s an educational center for kids. The educational center has many different rooms that were dedicated to the different areas of the refuge. Its very interesting, the rooms are interactive. There’s also a wild bird observations area.”

Established in 1960, The Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge is 12 square miles. Many migrating waterfowl use the refuge as a place to rest and feed along their migration. Some of the waterfowl you can plan to see here are mallards, green-winged teal, and American black ducks.

Common species of mammals spotted at the Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge include river otters, coyote, muskrats, raccoons and more. Approximately 39 species of mammals have been seen at the refuge. The population of bat species found on the refuge help to control the insect population. Types of bats found here include the eastern small footed bats and the federally endangered Indiana bat.

Some of the reptiles and amphibians you can plan to see at the refuge include the painted turtle, gray treefrog, and snapping turtle. Several federally and state threatened reptiles and amphibians find their home here. They include the bog turtle, wood turtle and blue spotted salamander.

There are several types of habitats maintained at the Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge. They include forested wetlands, grasslands, and brushlands.

If you are planning a move to the area, contact us for a FREE copy of our town snapshots. You can reach us by phone at 973-637-0004 or via email at Shannon@ShannonAronson.com. To learn more about our communities, and for great real estate information, please be sure to visit my website at www.NJRealEstateDirect.com.

Summit Restaurant Week


Thursday, 7/20/17, begins the Summit Restaurant Week. Live music downtown as well as prize drawings at participating restaurants kick off the festivities. Summit Restaurant Week runs through Sunday, 7/30/17. During Summit Restaurant Week, participating restaurants offer price fixe menus at $25, $35 or $45. Some restaurants will also offer specials and outdoor seating.

Participating $25 Prix Fixe restaurants include:

Fiorino Ristorante ($25 lunch, $45 dinner); Located at 38 Maple St
Jenny’s Japanese Cuisine; Located at 447 Springfield Ave
La Pastaria; Located at 327 Springfield Ave
Negeen Persian Grill; Located at 330 Springfield Ave
Summit Diner; Located at 1 Union Pl
Summit Thai Cuisine; Located at 34 Maple St
The Bombay Bistro; Located at 427 Springfield Ave
The Committed Pig; Located at 339 Springfield Ave
The HAT Tavern; Located at 570 Springfield Ave
Winberie’s Restaurant; Located at 2 Kent Place Blvd

Participating $35 prix fixe restaurants include:
Batavia Café; Located at 356 Springfield Ave
Marco Polo; Located at 527 Morris Ave
Rosalita Mexican; Located at 10 Maple St
Summit Greek Grill; Located at 90 Summit Ave

Participating $45 prix fixe restaurants include:
Fiorino Ristorante ($25 lunch, $45 dinner); Located at 38 Maple St
Huntley Taverne; Located at 3 Morris Ave
Piattino; Located at 67 Union Pl
Roots Steakhouse; Located at 401 Springfield Ave

For links to menus and to see restaurants offering specials during Summit Restaurant Week, please visit the Summit Restaurant Week website.

If you are planning a move to Summit NJ, or any surrounding communities, contact us for a FREE copy of our town snapshots. To search homes for sale, click here. To learn more about Summit NJ, and for great real estate tips, please be sure to visit my website at www.NJRealEstateDirect.com.

247 Parsonage Hill Road Millburn Township NJ

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The Shannon Aronson Team is excited to announce our new listing at 247 Parsonage Road Millburn Township NJ. Located in one of the town’s premier neighborhoods, this fine home rests on almost a half acre of beautifully landscaped property and is positioned to take full advantage of all this upscale community has to offer! Please join us for an open house at this fantastic property on Saturday, 7/15, from 2-4 or Sunday, 7/16, from 2-4.

MLS Number: 3403264
Bedrooms: 4
Baths: 2.5

Classic Floorplan Lends Itself Perfectly to Entertaining

A welcoming covered porch greets you as you make your way into 247 Parsonage Road Millburn Township NJ. The classic split level floor plan lends itself perfectly to entertaining and comfortable daily living.  On the main level, the living room, formal dining room, sunny kitchen and family room come together to greet your guests and invite them to mingle freely.  The patio door in the family room takes you outside for al fresco dining on the deck, while a generous backyard is made for active play and gardening.

Plenty of Space to Meet All Your Needs

Bedrooms occupy the second and third levels of 247 Parsonage Road Millburn Township NJ. Each bedroom offers plenty of closet storage and pleasant treetop views. The master enjoys the benefit of a full master bath, while the hall bath aptly serves the remaining bedrooms.  The ground and lower levels are finished to accommodate indoor play, casual entertaining, hobbies and exercise.  Adjacent to the den, on the ground level, is the laundry room and a powder room, while the den has access to the garage and a door to outside.  Completing the lower level is ample storage space and easy access to utilities.

If you are unable to make one of the open houses this weekend, and you would like to arrange a private tour of 247 Parsonage Road Millburn Township NJ, please contact me! You can reach me by phone at 973-637-0004 or via email at Shannon@ShannonAronson.com. To search more homes for sale, click here. If you would like to learn more about Millburn NJ and other surrounding communities, please contact us for a FREE copy of our town snapshots. Don’t forget to visit my website at www.NJRealEstateDirect.com for more great real estate information.

Home Buying Expenses

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Purchasing a home is an exciting time! If you are planning to buy a home, we’d love to help! When determining how much of a down payment you can afford, don’t overlook these home buying expenses that sometimes are forgotten. Visit the HGTV.com website to view the article in its entirety.

  1. Appraisal Fee:  This fee is paid as part of the loan approval process.  The fee typically runs anywhere between $200 and $1,000.
  2. Home Inspection:  Your lender will provide you with a good faith estimate of how much the inspection will cost (usually between $300-$800 for your average home), but you may not know the actual dollar amount you need to bring to closing until a day or two before.  If the home needs to be inspected for mold, termites, or if a structural engineer needs to look at the home, the cost could go up.
  3. Homeowner’s Association Fees:  Some subdivisions charge an annual or monthly fee the upkeep of common areas.  Plan for these costs accordingly in your budget.
  4. Repairs, Upgrades and Renovations:  Don’t forget to budget for anything that needs to be done to your home to make it move-in ready.
  5. Fees for rental vans and boxes.
  6. Termination Fees:  Check things such as your internet and cell phone contracts to see if any fees will be charged when you cancel your current services.
  7. Appliances: If you are purchasing a new construction home, they usually don’t include appliances such as refrigerators, washers or dryers.  If you are purchasing a home that is not new, sometimes you can negotiate with the sellers to leave their appliances behind.  If so, you may still need to purchase some appliances, especially if you are trying to keep a uniform look (ie:  all appliances in the kitchen stainless steel, etc.)
  8. Household Items:  If you are moving to a larger space, don’t forget the day-to-day items you may need more of, such as trash cans and lamps.  If purchasing new construction, you may also need to buy things such as towel bars and bathroom mirrors.
  9. Lawn Care Equipment:  If you haven’t had to take care of a yard, don’t forget that in your new home you  may be responsible for mowing, raking, etc.  Plan in your budget for the purchase lawn tools if that is the case.

As I said, if you are planning to buy a home, we’d love to help you find the perfect one!  Contact us to set up a showing.  You can reach us by phone at 973-637-0004 or via email at Shannon@ShannonAronson.com.  To search homes for sale, or for great real estate information, please be sure to visit my website at www.NJRealEstateDirect.com.